Charles Darwin University

Charles Darwin University (Casuarina).

Charles Darwin University is the only university based in the Northern Territory. The main campus is in tropical Darwin, about 12 km from the city centre and near a beach. CDU also has regional centres in many parts of the NT and offers courses online. What's it like to study with CDU? If you've ever been a CDU student, feel free to post a review and let people know about your experiences.

CDU Rating

User Rating 2.63 (160 votes)
Comments Rating 1.35 (26 reviews)

Student Reviews

47 Responses

  1. George Porens
    | Reply


    Got a offer ? Think twice about bizare CHARLES DARWIN UNIVERSITY it may be the worst university in Australia

    To my astonishment, by day before the final exam. I got an email from the lecturer.
    I was accused of wanting to kill the lecturer, of being a homophobe, a racist, and above all not knowing the basics in a subject that i was actually absorbing the contents and material quite well. wow!!
    During the actual semester- the lecturer made errors in the assement of my assignment. Three times the lecturer mentioned “excellent work”, then made errors on the material, and marked me 56%. it seems pretty tough given the quality of work. The comments were long full of character slurs.
    However, the real problem was the exam. They didn’t know how to mark their own exam.

    My exam seemed to be marked wrong when the work was correct.

    Examination Board Inteference
    it seems like somebody from the examination board marked my assignment down from a credit, and then changed the markers original comments as retaliation for making a complaint I ran the comments through AI , and it detected mismatches bewteen previous marking grades and previous comments. interesting.

    So i wrote a analysis of my exam paper with proofs that the paper was marked incorrectly-.which no body responded to.

    please, for your own well-being,, my advice is stay away from this institution and go somewhere else, and accept other offers. Nothing is worth all this trouble.

  2. William
    | Reply


    I will complete the Tertiary Enabling Program (TEP) at Charles Darwin University. Can I apply for a Certificate or Diploma course at another university? Does another university accept this result of the Program? Thank you.

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  3. David
    | Reply

    Avoid this uni.

    This uni is beyond a joke for studying online (or probably in general as well I imagine).

    No support for students. The Student hub has no idea about anything you are ever asking them. They palm you off to your course coordinator who won’t reply to you or again hand-ball you to someone else. No one apparently knows anything about anything at this uni…If you ever have questions just forget it. Try to figure it out yourself because none of the faculty could give two *****.

    The course itself manifests some of the worst teaching I’ve ever experienced as well. Lecturers are disorganized and just ‘wing’ every lesson they run. No quality instruction. Poor resources. Assessment outlines are non-existent or terribly designed. In my time at the uni so far I have learned nothing of value. Higher education my arse. This uni is the definition of a money grab, avoid at all costs.

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    • Phil
      | Reply

      Hi, David.
      Do you mind telling me which degree you were doing?

      I am considering a BSc so would like to know.

  4. Anne-Louise Ray
    | Reply


    My advice (which was also the same advice given to me when I had to phone a CDU student counsellor) is to enroll at another university. I have had a horrible experience at this university as a mature-aged external student, attending all classes online. Many of my lectures are pre-recorded, and have been difficult to understand due to very poor quality audio, for example, voices fading in and out, cutting out, and at times they just seem to be disorderly. Enrolled in an educational studies unit last semester, I spent weeks completing all assessments, achieved good results, yet was graded ‘F’, and spent many painful hours convincing the lecturer to apply the right grade (which was finally changed to ‘C’). I felt I was treated so badly by this lecturer. Unfortunately, I was forced to engage with numerous areas of the university to correct the grade, and really given the run-around, feeling like I was in some kind of unreal (hidden) world of trauma and abuse. Bounced around from Access and Inclusion (“you should have contacted us earlier to let us know your lecturer would not approve an extension due to disability”) to CDU complaints (I will help you sort this – you will need to do a, b, c…and heaps more work, to go through the complaint channels), to the course coordinator who didn’t have a clue what to do and gave me wrong information, to the lecturer herself, who berated me for complaining, and refused to be supportive in any way, reducing me to tears. As I mentioned before, I had to phone a student counselling number due to distress. He told me “go somewhere else to study”. I am still attending, in the Diploma of Science course, and really don’t want to drop out due to old age. I started studying at CDU in 1986 and did not continue my BA course due to a lecturer often being drunk, and feeling that it was a dodgy institution. I did not study after that happened, but instead, I worked and travelled. I am now old, and really wanted to complete my qualification in Darwin, but am thinking I can’t go on. I owe about $8000 in fees. On a positive note, when I attended this university to complete the TEP (Tertiary enrollment program) I had excellent lecturers and gained great results, even a couple of D’s. However, now that I am attending as a fee-paying student, I am noticing that my grades are often much lower that I think they should be, and I often get no feedback from lecturers, and I have no way of gaining encouragement to continue my studies when the going gets tough. I am often having to follow up on assessments marking, and getting things re-marked etc. I do get the feeling that some of my lecturers need more support, as they seem so stressed and exhausted when trying to lecture/teach a class of students (albeit very small number) and operate the technology to teach the online students at the same time. I am currently in the process of waiting for a reply from my science unit lecturer about the re-marking of an assessment, having already posted to her via the discussion board, sent her an email, made a phone call which she didn’t answer, emailed the course coodinator who says he isn’t the course coordinator, and have emailed the lecturer, and will now wait and see. Exhausting and demoralising overall.

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  5. KP
    | Reply

    Excellent Faculty

    I recently finished my masters in IT, and I am so happy with the outcome. I had the best experience of my life at CDU, with Excellent faculty and heaps of opportunities for students. International student’s life can be changed once you are here. You will meet people from around the globe. Highly recommended if you are looking for a better future.

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  6. KK
    | Reply

    Bad Uni Bad

    Currently studying 1st year of Bach of Clinical Sci,
    Not worth it
    Lecturers are not organised

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  7. Tegan
    | Reply

    Would give a -1 Star review if i could

    Arguably the worst university in the country!
    There are so many issues at this uni; it is a tough decision to decide what to outline here as this review could go on for days. So i will outline the two major issues i encountered.
    I enrolled to study Accounting to further my business knowledge at the CDU Waterfront campus, and while the facilities were modern, that is where the positives ended. The first lecturer, i had kept getting confused between Debitors and Creditors, and when i called her up on it, she started yelling at me to be quiet. I later wrote a formal complaint about her, and the Team Leader called me to advise she is now off on stress leave and that, due to this, they can no longer run the unit. I left and enrolled in another uni via correspondence.
    Sadly, we have had several apprentices go through the Electrology Vet area, and i would not wish this on anyone. AANT even said they are aware of their incompetence, but they have no choice as NTG back CDU and ignore complaints.
    The most recent issue with Electrology is that a complaint was made to the Team Leader about bullying by a lecture. However, this complaint was ignored. They are now making every interaction difficult when there is no choice but to continue to take the courses through them for the qualification. This is due to NTG not approving other RTO’s, so CDU have a monopoly.
    I would not entrust this unorganised, useless, admin-heavy, dysfunctional circus of a university with the education of a field mouse. It is a joke and needs a major review by a third party.

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  8. Dee
    | Reply

    Do not come to CDU VET Accounting study.
    I felt wasting Time and money, I basicly spend thousands dollars but reading all the books through by myself as I do want to learn stuff not just a certification. the most hard thing is you have to spend so much time to do the assessment. they will ask you to redo it just for some not important issue, but no one teach you very well the important things. not just assessment, it is time wasting to login in this login that, every time you open your laptop spending 30 mins to get ready with your online study things or prepare the assessment. so bad!
    the only good lecture I can not understand his accent. it is so sad.the rest of them, no support and really grumpy and arrogant.
    I do not know which uni is better. but this one is for sure not a good choice!

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  9. Mia
    | Reply

    Suck CDU

    If I can give 0 star I will.
    Please go Flinders University or other universities as CDU nursing placement team is notorious for the followings:

    1. Huge jetlog for placements. I am in my final semester, and I still have 4 placements to go (in total 5 placements that you need to complete for Batchelor). There are also other students who are one year advance than me and only completed one placement because CDU couldn’t find them a placement! They have been talking about stopping taking more new students to leave the placement quota for the current students, but not sure this will happen. (If they stop then who will pay for the university costs??)

    2. Incompetent staff. I got my first placement cancelled by the hospital which is unfortunate but it is due to the combination of wards so CDU couldn’t do much and I understand that. But second time I was given a remote placement at my own costs. I took it but then the placement team emailed me again and said they had to cancel my placement because I haven’t done my second year placement. I went to the placement team office on campus and was reassured that I can do that placement and she has emailed her colleague about this. I went home and told work that I will be away for 1 month and arranged the accommodation. Same day in the evening, I received an email saying that my placement was cancelled, and that they will try to email the hospital to let me do a second year placement there but no guarantee. I went to the office again next morning and the staff told me they had a meeting and decided that I can’t have the placement. It’s such a great disappointment!

    3. Different staff, different results. It’s really up to luck which placement team member that you approach for help. I went in the morning to ask for a placement plan, and they turned me down. The same day in the afternoon my fried went there (she’s OZ btw), they gave it to her! Also my other friends who approached different staff in the team gets the tentative schedule and most of them finished placements as scheduled. But now I will have to wait indefinitely for the placement team to arrange the placements for me. It’s so sad that my friends got to finish placements locally, while I have to spend $$ and volunteer to go interstate or remote to do my placements because I don’t have a single idea when my placement will be.

    4. Staff are unfriendly and unapologetic and unsympathetic to student situations. They made a mistake for my placement and just said that they couldn’t do more within their power, which they can (see point 3). They didn’t realise how this will affect students’ life and future plans and just gave you that “sorry but whatever” attitude.

    5. They tried every means to avoid desperate students seeking help from them. They said they are understaffed so they reduced the speed to email replies significantly. They also have tried moving offices, work from home, deactivate the email address that deal with placement stuff.

    I am afraid that posting these things here will affect my study, but I am too pissed off. Please people don’t come to CDU nursing. You have better choices such as Flinders. I emailed Flinders for accommodation in the remote area, and they got back to me in a flash, also their students graduated in time and no placement issues as far as what I heard from my friends.

    Best to all of your studies. Make wise choices.

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    • Irina K.
      | Reply

      Hi Mia,

      Could you please let me know if international students also have issues with placements in Sydney campus? I am considering master of nursing (pre-registration) for the next year in Sydney.

      Thank you. I would appreciate to get a feedback from you.

  10. Lauren
    | Reply


    GO ANYWHERE BUT HERE!!!! I am only repeating what I’ve briefly read but this university is deplorable. Its a sinking ship. Start swimming the other way. They entice you with alleged flexible study options and advanced standing but trust me its not worth it. I’ve been a Paramedic for 18 years and thought why not doing my nursing on the side. It was meant to take me 1.5 years. Im now in my fourth year and I’m still chasing placement hours. They don’t answer your calls. They don’t answer your emails AND if they do you cop an earful because “don’t you know how busy we are”. The place is a joke. I know many students in the same predicament that can’t get placement hours BUT the university still continues to enrol new students every year. All they want is you money. I would give negative stars if I could!

  11. Rubi
    | Reply

    University is good or bad. Should I apply or not?

    I’m applying for master of nursing 2023. Should i apply. Is this university is good for nursing?

  12. Ashley
    | Reply

    Avoid, avoid, avoid

    Aside from the arrogance and rudness of the lecturers good luck finding out how your assessment grades are calculated. Grades are literally plucked from the air, no feedback nor marking rubrics are ever provided. Complaints process is passive aggressive with ‘built in’ delays in the hope you just go away. Charles Sturt University is amazing compared to the crap at CDU.

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  13. Craig
    | Reply

    Poor VET training

    Studied there as an apprentice. Really bad, lack of current training resources and you feel like you are being pushed through to get the money. No other options in Darwin so they can do what they want.

  14. Dann
    | Reply

    Worst University Ever

    CDU is the nastiest university in Australia. I would not suggest anyone to study there because it is waste of time and money. This university is full of crap, providing the inferior quality of education while maintaining monopoly in Northern Territory. Since it has been a single University, University is ripping international students off by increasing the tuition fee every year. Most of the Lecturer at CDU are not qualified and lack of sophisticated knowledge on their unit by which it creates the chaos among the students, unable to explain and comprehend the unit well. Lecturers without professional skills for teaching present on campus merely read out the lecture slides and knock off without elaborating the unit. On top of that, Students must be confined on limited area of knowledge, but the assignment assigned is tedious which requires to study beyond the unit syllabus. Not only they assign arduous assignment, but also, they put you up for 50% weight of group assignment where you have to be in group with unknown person living in different states. How an earth it is okay to be group not knowing each other to complete this huge task? Three years university turned out to be the terrible of my academic career. University is white elephant oriented merely towards raising the tuition fee. Furthermore, University is intended to fail the students so they can get the fund out of it which shows how miserable and woeful students are.

    • Stoca
      | Reply

      Very poor university

      This University is a joke. Assignments disappear grades changes without reason rude lecturer refusing to do their job student service useless. Ridiculous

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  15. Joe Bloggs
    | Reply

    Not my clowns, not my circus: Shoddy operation but pretty damn cheap.

    Psychology program.
    Similar to the other students who have posted reviews, the university is a bit of a hopeless basket-case, but it is the cheapest online degree around- be careful, because this is its only virtue. You’ll end up paying with your time, effort and sweat.
    A few samples:
    I asked for a review of an assessment and the teacher said no, here’s the policy. The policy said the first person to ask for a review is the teacher. I quoted that paragraph but was genuinely confused and openly asked if I’m reading it wrong. She denied that’s what it meant (mature-aged student, I have written these kind of policies) I had to tell the teacher off in order to get a review. Very childish.
    Later I had another teacher do the same thing. They will lie to your face about their responsibility.
    Then there are some teachers that enjoy telling you they personally understand victims and minorities becasue they have irritable bowel syndrome (apparently it helps a person understand people in wheelchairs or with mental illness).
    There was a stats course that consisted of 500+ plain slides. This teacher later copied half her course from a course online (, I had watched this guys lectures so I recognised the content- even the images were copied. You can’t make this stuff up.
    At the same time they’ll say stuff like ‘oh but of course I would never claim to understand xyz group because I’m not xyz ethnic’. This is insulting both ways (speaking as someone who is half of each group lol). Teaching Fail.
    Quite a few students ended up dropping out of courses or failing because the teachers just decide to not teach the full hours. When you complain about it the dean just says ‘oh but you had a lot of homework’.
    Basically, you pay for teaching and you get homework instead.
    Anyway, cheap and not very cheerful.

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    • l
      | Reply


      Is it hard to get in Charles Darwin University?

    • Coops
      | Reply

      Complain to the regulator

      I would recommend you contact the HE regulator TEQSA at [email protected] for HE issues. For anybody studying VET who is having an issue make a complaint to the regulator ASQA at I would also recommend emailing the NT Ombudsman as CDU and NTG have an ‘arrangement’ . Contacting these external bodies may help to ensure improvements at CDU. Unfortunately, it will not change the experience you have had.

      • Anon
        | Reply

        Ombudsman useless

        i tried contacting the ombudsman once and they said there was nothing they could do. I’ve just had to live with what I went through.

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  16. Suri
    | Reply

    inefficient and poor quality

    I am a bacholor of nursing student in final year trying see an end to this protracted degree which was supposed to be a three year fulltime. Currently, I am enrolled to my final two units. IIt is being almost two semesters since I enrolled, still not finished. Some staff of nursing scool does not want to meet students. Does not even answer any phone calls. Most of the time what I got was excuse after excuse for not having enough placement possitions.
    placement office is overloaded with work. Furthermore, they have slashed the number of staff. I don’t really blame the remaining staff as the situation is out of their controll too.
    All in all, my overall experience with CDU Darwin is dissapointing. I would never recomentd anyone to study at CDU Darwin.

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    • TR1992
      | Reply

      Do not go here

      Agree. I am in my second year nursing student and have not yet been able to complete a placement due to them changing the semesters units are available. Some of the lecturers are good but some others are just not interested. Do not give clarification on assignments nor do they respond to emails and delete discussion boards when students start complaining about no one responding. There is about 5-6 units just based on Culture which could easily be condensed into 1 or 2 units. Feel like you lose the idea of what you are actually studying in the big picture. They sent out emails about Summer semester pracs coming out and when i asked about when we can nominate they replied that the course is already full even though nominations were never sent out. I called student services and they knew nothing about the course even being full. Spoke to administration about how I have not been able to complete a practical yet and have nearly completed 14 units and just had practicals to go and they said ‘tough luck you have to wait till 2021’ which there is still no guarantee you could get a nomination to be able to complete the practical. When I asked about their plan on moving forward due to COVID they said they are taking it step by step and they aren’t sure what the plan will be moving forward. Where does that leave all the students who need to complete their practicals to move forward with this degree. I’m looking at being a 3rd year student now with no practical completed and no end in site for my degree. Incredibly upset and will be looking at changing universities. Waste of time and money

  17. Vanessa
    | Reply

    Pick another uni

    Very poor standard of teaching. Only interested in international students as they pay triple.understaffed as they fired lecturers even though they were already busting at the seams with students. 2 lecturer has up to 700 students so can’t possibly keep up with the demands leading to substandard teaching. There are never enough placements for nursing students because they enrol more student s then they can facilitate placements for which then leads to the nursing degree taking up to a year longer than expected. I wish I had of known this earlier. I have 6 months to go and when I do my masters I would never Chose this greedy university that only cares about profit. International student, expect to have to renew your visas due to lack of placements

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    • Mark
      | Reply

      Age Discrimination at CDU

      Exactly – pick another university.
      I was given a warning about the low
      standards of teaching for CDU by local
      health professionals as early as 2010.
      Age discrimination was experienced by myself from teaching employees at CDU during 2014 and 2016 in both Engineering and Health Science faculties
      in the presence of other students by way
      of referring to myself as “the old bloke up the back” and “older people should have employment and not waste our teaching resources that younger students as a preference need”. CDU is the only
      Australian university that I have attended
      where I have experienced direct multiple events of clear age discrimination and
      attempts of teacher based humiliation
      directed towards myself as a mature student.

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    • Neddy
      | Reply


      I absolutely agree with this statement. CDU dismissed a number of lecturers (reason unknown but presumably financial) and replaced them in week 3 of semester 2 2019. One staff member now seems to be taking many subjects, and our summer semester grade release date has passed without a grade release nor any notification of when or why. Communication is appalling, mainly due to staff shortages. Nursing placements are cancelled last minute, after long waiting times to be given them initially- again due to staff shortages. Degrees are prolonged due to this. I’m amazed they keep any staff as stress levels must be extremely high for them.
      Choose elsewhere.

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  18. Rhi
    | Reply

    MEH :/

    I am currently studying a Bachelor of Nursing at CDU mixed external and face to face.

    Lecturers seems to care very little about students. Google is your friend.
    There are a few who obviously care about us but most part not really. The content has to be learnt very fast in a short amount of time. Which wouldn’t be a problem if they gave the support along side it all.

    Assigments and essays are very confusing in the questions are written.

    Ask questions told will be discussed in next lecture but if external good luck getting answers whilst logged into the online classes. Invisible.

    IDK possibly transferring to another university.

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    • Priya
      | Reply

      Hii, i am planning to start nursing via online… could you explain a bit more in terms of placements and exaams as well.

      • Sarah
        | Reply

        Stay clear

        The CDU nursing staff are extremely rude and unprofessional assessment grades are often delayed and marked by subcontractors who’s first language is not English.

        In regards to placement you are required to attend a face to face simulation block for three of the five placements. You end up spending more time in a class room going over past unit content with little time in the labs. The staff at Sydney are just casual bank nurses trying to transition into academia that have less than five years full time nursing experience in nursing. Their experience is limited and are more focused on office politics than teaching. They usually ask the EEN students to teach the non EEN students while they chat in the corner. You cannot access the facilities outside class hours.

        The CDU policy’s fine print says CDU will try and secure you placement within 12 months of completing placement otherwise you are required to repeat simulation block. They can place you anywhere in Australia at the drop of a hat. They do not offer any support while you are on placement.

        Exams are outsourced to subcontractors and if you paper is lost you get blamed.

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        • Anon
          | Reply

          Do NOT GO HERE

          The placement team is horrible, I can’t believe there are only two staff members, it is disgusting how little the University cares for its student’s education. They simply want money from the students and don’t care if this drags out their studies. I understand that the University doesn’t have first pick of all the placement opportunities, but at least hire enough staff to take care of the students who are treated as basically invisible!! I’m looking at transferring as I’ve never felt to feel so useless and invisible in my life. Stop giving the Dean pay rises and start looking after the actual income source – your STUDENTS!!! Don’t leave this much burden on TWO STAFF MEMBERS to deal with THOUSANDS of STUDENTS!!!

          And after all this – the excuse is that they just aren’t enough of a developed Uni and in a remote location. Bullshit. The truth is that HOSPITALS steer clear of them!! The amount of nurses who I have told I’m from CDU! They have ALL said to me that “oh *groan* CDU is so fussy about their requirements, we HATE dealing with them,”. Wow. So I am paying to study with a Uni that hospitals hate, so FURTHER decreasing my chances of getting a placement.

          Yes I’m aware I sound like a ranting moron, and I’ll be surprised if you’re even still reading. But this is pathetic! Literally worse than a pyramid scheme. I feel embarrassed to call CDU my university! I’d have more pride in telling people I sell Pure Romance and TUPPERWARE for a living for God’s sake!

          They aren’t a university, they’re a business. A business who takes more money from international students than domestic ones, and let’s them study regardless of whether they understand English or not because cha-ching!!! Take a good, hard look at yourself CDU because this is just embarrassing. I’d put money on the fact that they will be obsolete by 2030 and probably shut down by the government due to fraud or debt.

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  19. Helen Nunn
    | Reply

    Glad I have finished with CDU

    I have been studying online through CDU for the last few years and gave it away.No support and lack of respect.from lecturers and no one cares. No interaction with other students. My husband studies through Murdoch university, Perth and it is fantastic. I have always found the lecturers at CDU very poor with communication.

    • Disappointed Education Student
      | Reply

      Disappointed Education Student

      I feel the same way Helen. . I have decided to give it away as I found no support from anyone. The lecturers do not care and will eventually reply to your emails when they are ready. My course has recently been discontinued whilst half way through my degree. There has been no support from course coordinator. There has been no flexibility to transfer to the Bachelor of Ed graduate entry to the Masters degree as its two different degrees and they want me to pay the fee through SATAC. I had a painful time last year with my practical as I had to find it myself(Inschool office staff very rude) and then this year CDU changed the rules to only the University finds placements. There was a lot of stress and expense. So in my opinion it has been a horrible experience and I would highly recommend another University.

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  20. Mark
    | Reply

    Disgraceful Teachers

    Don’t waste your time or money.
    Teaching staff who think they can
    get away with all sorts of insults and rude communication. Just because Darwin is remote doesn’t
    make you that important that you
    can treat students with such disrespect – especially school of environment. Students will just go elsewhere – as they do.

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  21. Line
    | Reply


    -small classes, fewer students, compare to other uni
    -lower tuition fees compare to other uni
    -stay in a lovely small city, Darwin
    -lectures with very great qualifications and experience (note: doesn’t mean all of them are great lectures though!)
    -easy parking, a lot of free parking
    -good wifi coverage
    -plenty of space to study in computer labs (till 1 am! with fridges and microwaves), library and empty classrooms (heaps of them!!).
    -quite happy with blackboard paltform (online classroom), free Microsoft programs and online library resources.

    -a lot of units only offered once a year and some of them don’t have internal classes (hence you must plan ahead what you gonna take and when).
    -good luck if you are external students, you need to study independently as some lectures won’t bother to give online lectures.
    -no uni life (unless you are staying in the uni accommodation).
    -bad internal communications among staff members overall.
    -canteen only sell food during lunch hour, no convenient store available.

    other notes:
    -there are a lot of mature age students, online students, part-time students. It means they are quite busy with their own life hence you hardly see any students in uni! you will hardly find same classmates throughout your degree. Orientation week is a must if you want to find networks with fellow students from your course.
    -If your course has placements/ intern/ practicums you must be really careful (with the availability, arrangements, mentors, and other classes and assignments due at the same time!) if you were from CDU u know what I mean!!
    -I am not surprised at all with all the comments here, it is just the way Territory is (slack, they couldn’t care less)
    -overall, if you prioritised your study, CDU is an OK uni to go, you won’t struggle too much.

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  22. sjb440
    | Reply

    I study nursing with cdu they are the worse uni ever don’t do it go anywhere else I’m near the end but I’m changing uni Soi can actually get somewhere and have a future

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    • Rhi
      | Reply

      Which University did you switch to?
      I’m thinking of changing.

  23. Reet
    | Reply

    Awful university

    I made a mistake by choosing CDU.very greedy university.All they are interested in to make money from students.Their focus is to collect money.Hate being with them.

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    • Mark Williams
      | Reply

      Disgraceful University not Fruendly to Mature Aged Students

      You’re not alone Reet. This dispair of attending CDU can be overwhelming. As a mature age student I have had aweful experiences over a three year period including but not limited to: open class lecturer references to my age; rude and aggressive lecturer behaviour (including being locked out of an engineering lecture in late 2014) when I was two minutes late due to a motor vehicle accident; unprofessional behaviour and confrontational approach from disability services at CDU; poor management and responses from CDU complaints management persons; overall high turnover of student teaching staff. It is still an expense and the years drift by to try to actively embrace a future employment role and this is the main frustration when we realise the true scope of lost opportunity by attending CDU. My heart goes out to you and I hope you can find a solution.

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  24. Astrid
    | Reply

    At the moment I study at Charles Darwin University for an Associated Degree in Networks Engineering and I am very disappointed and think that my studies are a waste of time an money. Some lectures can not even been bothered to give the gradings or comments for the assignments so you can study a bit more in the fields where there are problems.
    Or you get answers like ” Google is your best friend” for a question that has been asked.
    I am not paying to get answers like that.
    It sounds to me that I could do a degree just with google.
    Than the response time from the lecture is from fast to not at all for questions that you ask in an email or when you get stuck with a problem in the assignment (where u have to follow instructions out of a book) .
    Than the other thing is that they like to do online assignments, which would be not a bad thing, if the assignment would not be change in the last minute to an content which you have just mentioned in lectures but not discussed any further, so you have no idea how to solve the problem.
    Other lecturer like to take slides from teaching staff that have taught the subject before, and this slides would bee very good, if they would be in context with the lectures.
    Oh and another thing is, how can it be that a lecture is proud of the fact that just 40% of the students in his class pass his subject?
    I think that is nothing what you can be proud of.
    And this goes on and on.
    At first I though it was just me that has had problems but after a while it turned out that it was not just me, other students were struggling as well.
    So if I could chose again I would not waist my time and money on this university again.

  25. Marree
    | Reply

    Currently studying as an external student in Indigenous Knowledges ( I’m non indigenous). So far out of 5 courses, 3 lecturers were terrific. All were very engaged in a student’s learning journey. Daily comments after a student’s post on the forums/blogs made students feel truly interactive. Live online classes. I’ve been achieving distinctions in all my work save for one prof who was a doctoral student at the time. She was absent from any online activity, uploaded previous semester material and was unduly cutting in her grading of assignments and I received a passing grade only. All in all, it’s been a positive experience so far. CDU, I believe, offers the best degree for Indigenous studies of all Australian Universities.

  26. romars acharya
    | Reply

    Darwin is diverse culturally and there are markets in several locations

    • Jethro
      | Reply

      Yes it's below average

      I’m studying nursing at CDU, communication is shocking especially around placements. There’s little support and they are even getting rid of the placement support team. The quality of the units is below average, marking is wholly inconsistent and it’s easy to get good grades without learning anything important. If you are external or outside NT, good luck finishing, they dont make it easy! You get what you pay for and while it could be a representation of “higher” education accross the board, this is the cheap, bulk imported crap Aldi version of a university. Wasted 2 years but lesson learned… if you haven’t worked it out by now, I don’t recommend.

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  27. TM
    | Reply

    I am currently doing my study with CDU. Doing Bach. of Env. Science. It’s been very disappointing. I echo what has been written already, in that the level of teaching and support provided to external students is poor. I transferred from Bach. of Exercise and Sports Science, to Env. Science. But, I am now considering transferring to JCU, in order to have better support from the Lecturers – and to be able to attend a Uni, since I am now living in Townsville.

    There has been one Lecturer out of the three years I have been studying part-time with CDU, who has bothered to initiate contact with me. She made sure the unit content made sense and also followed up half-way through the Semester. The other issue that I have found with this Uni, is the pressure for the exams. Of all the subjects that I have sat a test for, there has only been one test for the whole semester, and that one test is worth 50% of your overall mark. Huge amount of pressure to try and remember 12 weeks of important points. That is so frustrating. When I didn’t do so well with my recent exam (S2-2016), I had a note from the Lecturer to ‘do more exam prep’. Little did he know the amount of hours that I was doing for exam prep. Trying to remember the quantity of data, to ready for a long-answer exam is extremely tedious. When going from doing Assignments then to do a long-written responses for the exam seems to also be dis-jointed. There is no practice with the types of long-written responses that they are looking for. 3 hours for the tests that goes quick when hand-writing out long-responses.

  28. S
    | Reply

    Would not recommend. I was born and bred in Darwin and applied here thinking it would provide me with a decent education. I regret coming here as I wasted my time on a 4 year degree of which I was able to do nothing with. With passes and credits in hand, I was accepted into a university in a different state, applied for the same course, and received distinctions all the way through. Poor standard of teaching at CDU. Save your money because that seems to be all they’re interested in.

  29. bluestocking
    | Reply

    I was an external student enrolled into the Bachelor of Education and have recently completed my study.
    I would describe my overall learning experience at CDU when compared with my learning experiences at other Uni’s/Tafe and private RTO’s as poor. I would not feel comfortable about recommending the Bachelor of Education offered by CDU.

    There are a few standout lecturers who do a wonderful job. There are many who standout because their ability to do their job is questionable. These lecturers are slow to respond to emails and questions posed on the discussion boards, or they simply do not respond to questions at all. This is less than ideal for external students who have no other way to connect with their lecturers.

    When I was shopping around for a uni I spoke with the course coordinator who told me that as an external student I would have access to online classes and have real time access to lecturers. This could not be further from the truth. Only two – yes two lecturers in my entire Bachelor Award offered weekly or fortnightly classes. The rest offered no online classes at all or uploaded pre recorded lectures for students to watch. Usually these re recorded lectures were offered very sporadically. So as an external student do not expect much in the way of lectures.

    In my final placement unit the lecturer changed the assessment and marking rubric three times during the period that the subject ran. I actually did not think that an RTO could do this. These actions created a great deal of stress for the students and made the Uni look unprofessional.

    Poorly written assessments, a lack of marking rubrics in some units, missing instructions for assessments where ongoing issues. Another common issue was that some lecturers would just reloaded the course resources from one semester to the next without checking that web links were still active, while another faculty area was grading students referencing against outdated APA referencing styles because the staff had not bothered to check the APA style that the Uni was asking students to use. I paid for and expected a better quality of service than that.

    There are huge issues in the placement faculty, all of their documentation needs to be proof read and edited as I found that on different parts of the placement website and in the actual placement documents there is conflicting information. Again this causes distress to students when they are trying to organise placement and determine what the placement requirements actually are.

    If you do not reside in the Northern Territory be aware that you will need to find your own teaching placements. This is difficult to do because schools generally have a contract with their own state uni’s to provide placement opportunities for their students. So many schools will not take on CDU students. My advice would be that if you are interested in becoming a teacher, study at a uni that will find your placements for you. I personally know of one CDU student who gave up his study because he could not secure a placement and I also know of three students who dropped out of CDU and transferred to a uni in their own state because of issues around placement.

  30. Brodee
    | Reply

    Save your future self and look at studying at ANY other university. I’ve studied at CDU since 2011 and regret it. CDU offers no support (unless you’re indigeneous), no uni life and you’re expected to organise your lecturers. A perfect example of a CDU experience is just this year i applied to graduate, which lead to an email of confirmation and then a week later i was informed that i had to study one more unit in order to qualify to graduate, even though it wasn’t in the original course content. Half way through that unit i was told that i could graduate without completing it so i unenrolled and applied to graduate as i was told to do so by the graduation department. The next day i received a phone call from graduation to inform me i cannot graduate without doing that unit. Very disappointed.

  31. Sandra
    | Reply

    I can’t say I would recommend it. I completed a one year Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning at CDU in 2012. The course did little to prepare me for teaching. Considering that it was a condensed course, the course was overly theoretical. Much of the content was distanced from the reality of the profession. I was surprised that so little attention was given to the teaching of Aboriginal students when they comprise more than 40% of the student population in the Northern Territory. The work load burnt most students out as it included an 80 day prac (teaching, programming, lessons plans) alongside assignments with extensive and impossible reading lists. I didn’t hear any other students in the course saying that they thought it was a great course. On the positive side accommodation had expanded with the construction of several new buildings. Bus services still come directly to the entrance of the campus. The campus is near the beach and it is the tropics… warm to very warm all year. Darwin is diverse culturally and there are markets in several locations on a regular basis.

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